Coinbase CEO Wins Patent for Sending Bitcoin Directly from Emails

Coinbase CEO Brian Armstrong has won a U.S. patent for a development that makes sending bitcoin as simple as sending an email. 

The patent, granted on December December 17 and filed in March 2015, specifies a framework for clients to make digital currency payments with email addresses connected to corresponding wallet addresses. The sender makes a request to send digital currency to an email address, and the framework consequently transmits the agreed sum—as long as they have the necessary balance—from the sender’s wallet to the wallet corresponding to the recipient’s email address.

The framework takes 48 hours for the transaction to clear, as soon as the receiver has affirmed the payment. Digital currencies of money not being used would be stored in a secured vault that can only be accessed by the email address connected to the corresponding wallet.

While Coinbase has made over $2 billion in transaction costs since 2012, the proposed email framework won’t impose user fees. As per the patent, mining charges will be paid for by the exchange itself. Transactions to external wallet addresses to would be possible, but may not be free-of-charge.

The patent particularly makes reference to bitcoin and doesn’t state whether the framework could support different digital currencies, but apparently, that wouldn’t be a significant hurdle. There additionally seems to be no limitation on email providers, which means clients could utilize existing email addresses should they wish to.

The email framework would likewise include a featured exchange facility for clients to make in-app bitcoin exchanges utilizing fiat currency from a linked bank account.

Regardless of whether the exchange designs another service dependent on the patent isn’t clear.

Two different patents were awarded to Coinbase on December 17. One is an application for guaranteeing client accounts conform to global and local law, the other an enforcement protocol for shutting resistant records.

The email transaction framework would possibly make digital currency transactions simpler for less advanced clients. In August, Armstrong stated he liked to build an inclusive financial framework: “The vision for Coinbase is creating more economic freedom for every person and business in the world over the next 10 years.”